Bonfire Night - The Veterinary Centre, Glasgow

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Bonfire Night

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Hot Topics - Bonfire Night

Not all of our pets appreciate this time of year. The loud bangs and whooshes are scary.

Some responses include:
· House soiling.
· Shaking.
· Hiding.
· Vocalisation.
· Destructive behaviour.

There are numerous ways we can combat these reactions:

  • D.A.P Diffuser – ideally this should be plugged in 1 month before bonfire night. It looks much like the plug in air fresheners that we buy from the supermarket, but this one we cannot smell. It contains Pet Appeasing Pheromone, which mimics the properties of the natural appeasing pheromones of the bitch, and helps alleviate fear and stress related signs in the puppy and adult dog.

  • Feliway Diffuser – these are the feline variety, which work in the same way as the D.A.P diffusers.

  • Skullcap and Valerian – this is a traditional herbal remedy that calms and relaxes the nervous pet. It comes in the form of tablets and it does not cause drowsiness or impair normal behaviour.

  • Zylkene - a natural product to help with stress-related behaviour issues.

  • Prescription medicine- e.g. sedatives, these can be discussed with any of our trained staff, however they should be a last resort.

Some Bonfire Night Advice

· Do not punish the pet when it is scared as this only confirms that there is something of which to be afraid.
· Do not fuss or try to reassure the pet when it is scared as this only rewards the behaviour.
· Do not ignore any fearful behaviour that occurs for no good reason.
· Do feed the pet a good meal mid to late afternoon (but do not try this if the pet is prone to diarrhoea when scared).
· Make sure that the pet is kept in a safe and secure environment at all times, so that it cannot bolt and escape at any sudden noise.
· Do put some music on although this doesn’t have to be loud.
· Do ignore the noises yourself and try to engage the pet in some form of active game.
· Try and move the pet to a blackened room at sundown that contains toys and familiar object as this removes the additional problem of flashing lights, which sometimes precede the noise.
· Do not just ignore the phobia problem because it only happens once or twice a year. Instigate a desensitisation programme once the season is over.

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